Working in an office for a prolonged number of hours is unavoidable in today’s date when everyone is so competitive. Many job descriptions comprise sitting and working in one posture for hours which is the most common reason of lower back and shoulder pain at work or elevation of pain if it already persists.
Back pain is one of the most common issues in the U.S. According to Statista, “back pain is one of the most common health complaints among adults in the United States. Such pain can be caused by strained muscles or ligaments, excess weight, poor posture, psychological problems, or everyday activities. A Statista survey from 2017 found that 29 percent of U.S. adults with back problems believed stress was the cause of their pain, while 26 percent blamed weak muscles or a lack of exercise, and another 26 percent blamed physical work. Also, 54% of adults had a neck or back pain for five years or longer as of 2017.”
So, you are not only one experiencing back pain. To avoid or treat shoulder and back pain which is caused at work, you need to first understand what is causing the pain;
Causes of Neck, Shoulder and Back Pain at Work:
Neck, shoulder or back pain does not happen in a day but it develops gradually hence to figure out exactly what is causing the pain may be difficult. We have listed down potential reasons of shoulder and back pain at work
- When people work for prolonged hours sitting in a chair, they tend to slouch, and this absurd posture can give rise to back pain due to spinal misalignment.
- Improper back support which causes the shoulder to roll forward causing a prolonged bad posture which gives rise to back pain.
- Looking down at the screen at an angle puts extra strain on neck and back muscle.
- If your mouse is far away from the keyboard, then your elbows are too far away from your body causing strain on the shoulder and upper back.
- Holding phone between ear and shoulder while multitasking may cause shoulder and neck pain.
- Sitting in one place for too long can cause stiffness of muscles causing pain throughout the body.
- Sedentary work environment and lifestyle can cause muscle weakness which causes shoulder and back pain.
We have listed below the guidelines you need to follow to get rid of or avoid back and shoulder pains permanently;
How to Get Rid of Shoulder and Back Pain:
The cause of shoulder and back pain of each individualis different hence different solutions will work on different people. You need to try out different solutions until you find the one that works for you.
Stand and Stretch at Your Desk Frequently:
Standing at your desk throughout the day for short periods will break the monotonous sitting posture relieving the pressure on the spine. Also, stretch at your desk to flex your muscles to prevent from muscle stiffness causing neck, shoulder or back pain.
Adjust the Ergonomic Chair:
Most of the offices make sure to provide ergonomic office chairs which offer lower back support to the employees. You need to adjust the chair as per your requirement to sit comfortably. Make sure you set the height of the chair right so that the monitor is in yourstraight-line view.
Get a Separate Keyboard Tray and Monitor Arms Installed:
Keyboard tray will let you adjust the height of the keyboard independent of your desktop monitor. This can help you with sitting in the right posture and relieve you from pain. Further, monitor arms will allow you to place the monitor exactly within an ideal angle and height hence you can achieve a better posture and also improve the aesthetic look of your workplace.
Try Physical Activities:
Activities like Yoga and Pilates can help in improving your posture as it includes stretches which will help in reducing your shoulder, back and neck pain, all at once. You need to be careful while practicing these activities as some postures and poses can aggravate the pain as well. If you plan on doing these activities, hire a professional trainer and let them know your physical ailments.
Take a Professionals Help:
When nothing else works, the last resort should be getting professional help. You can start by getting pain treatment massage, this may feel more like a luxury than treatment, but a good massage therapist knows how to relieve you of the pain.
One of the most effective ways of treating back, neck and shoulder pain is to visit a chiropractor as they are highly trained in musculoskeletal manipulation. They can easily identify the cause of pain and treat the areas of pain by physical therapy. They will also suggest other day-to-day activities which will help you manage and relieve the pain. Around 41 percent of the adults in the U.S. said that chiropractic care can help a great deal with a neck or back pain as per Statista.
Prolonged hours of working on a computer may be the culprit behind your neck, shoulder and back pain but as that is your bread and butter, it is unavoidable. A combination of the chair, keyboard, and monitor set up along with stress and postural strain causes the pain and the key to reduce it is for you to determine the factor which is elevating your symptoms. This set of action would help you manage and reduce your neck, shoulder and back pain altogether.